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East Devon is a beautiful area with many public footpaths, parks and areas of common land where you can walk your dog.

Woodbury Common is particularly popular with dog walkers as once away from the car park and roads, there are many acres of open land that dogs can explore with their owners.  The coastal path provides a spectacular walk and views, although you may want to keep your dog on a lead along here as the many rabbits can entice an excited dog far too close to the cliffs.  In all towns there are areas of open space or park where well-behaved dogs are welcome, although in some areas you may need to keep your dog on a lead.

Dogs and beaches

Along the Jurassic Coast of East Devon, many dogs enjoy a day at the beach when they are allowed to run free and play in the sea or to simply feel the sand beneath their paws! 

From October to May you may walk your dog freely on the beaches.

We also recommend you always

  • keep your dog on a lead if it does not respond to your recall
  • clean up after your dog and never bury faeces in the sand or leave below the high tide line – the requirement to pick up and use a bin applies everywhere you go with your dog and it really can spoil the beach for other people
  • ensure your dog is well behaved and listens to your verbal commands
  • respect other beach users and keep your dog away from them
  • keep your dog on a lead on the highway and pavements and until you get on to the beach

You are not allowed to walk your dog on the main beaches in East Devon between 1 May and 30 September. Exmouth, Budleigh Salterton, Sidmouth, Beer and Seaton beaches all have dog exclusion areas.

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Cleaning up after your dog

Unfortunately a few careless or thoughtless dog owners can cause a great deal of annoyance and distaste to all members of the public by not clearing up the mess their dogs can leave behind. Please see our page on dog fouling and dog bins.

Owners must clear up after their dogs on all land (including beaches) where the public have access.

Other laws and restrictions

  • In East Devon there are a number of other restrictions, for example, dogs may be banned from certain land (for example children’s play areas) and in other areas dogs need to be kept on their leads. Please view further information on the public spaces protection orders pages  
  • You are not allowed to be in control of more than six dogs at any time in a public place
  • Every dog must wear a collar and tag showing the owners contact details
  • Microchipping dogs became law from 1 April 2016